I aim to be calm, pro-active and organised in my approach. I appreciate my clients are often distressed and anxious. My role is to guide them through an unfamiliar process and help them to make the best decisions for them and their family. I know cost is a real concern. I aim always to resolve cases in the most effective and cost-efficient way possible. Often, that is best achieved through negotiation or collaborative practice. However, sometimes court is the only option and if so I am a robust litigator too.
I have a particular interest and experience in the financial issues arising from separation and divorce, often involving high net worth, complex or unusual matters. Over my twenty year career I have been involved in many complicated cases in both the Sheriff Court and the Court of Session.
I also have experience of all aspects of family law, including divorce and separation, civil partnership, financial provision, cohabitant claims, preparation of pre and post nuptial agreements, cohabitation agreements and issues to do with children including residence and contact.
I am accredited by the Law Society of Scotland as a specialist in family law as well as an accredited family mediator. I am trained in interdisciplinary collaborative practice. I am dual-qualified in Scottish and English law.
Up until 2021 I was a tutor in family law on the Strathclyde University Diploma in Professional Legal Practice. Until recently I was also a committee member of the Royal Faculty of Procurators in Glasgow and of the local Glasgow collaborative practice group. I regularly write articles and blogs and deliver talks, both externally and internally.
My current caseload features several mid to high net worth divorce cases. They include litigated and negotiated cases. Some involve complex business assets. I also have a number of cohabitation cases, both those where parties want to regulate aspects of their cohabitation in the event of separation or death and those where cohabitants have separated. I have several cases involving issues to do with children. I am referred cases with a cross border element and other jurisdictional matters. I also have cases where I am acting as mediator.
I am a “Ranked Lawyer” in Chambers UK legal directory where I am noted as being experienced in handling matrimonial finance matters including financial provision and insolvency. I am highlighted by sources as a “knowledgeable, proactive, realistic and exceptionally hard working” practitioner who “asks the difficult questions and very often has the answers.”
I am also a “Recommended Lawyer” in The Legal 500 where it is said I bring “a careful and considered approach, which has been effective in bringing about a good outcome in the cases in which I have acted on her instructions.”
"Jenny Smith was very on hand and understood my tight timescales and to time while out of office to ensure I was able to complete on my house purchase by ensuring I was aware of all points of my separation agreement."
"Pleasing and welcoming atmosphere from reception to meeting room. Competent and pleasant staff making you deal with a difficult subject/issue with ease. Thank you!"
"My thanks to Jenny Smith for the straight forward and uncomplicated support and advice she has given me throughout this process which was completed in an entirely acceptable way."
"Appreciated the prompt responses to all enquiries and your dedicated effort in progressing the case at each stage."
"Jenny and the team were great, very clear and quick responses. Can’t thank them enough for their help and assistance."
"I never imagined I would have to go through a divorce and this was a particularly difficult time for me. The service I received from Natalie and Jenny was excellent. They were so helpful and patient given the length of time it took for matters to be resolved, in what should have been a simple and straightforward process. I am very grateful and cannot recommend Harper Macleod highly enough."
"Jenny Smith was excellent. Professional, informative and friendly. She was quick to respond and listened to my needs."
"Jenny was excellent at keeping in touch with me. If I emailed, she always got back to me quickly and never left me wondering about the status of my case."
"She is thoughtful, cerebral and hard-working."
"Jenny Smith is simply outstanding with a no-nonsense approach providing sound and easily understandable advice."
"Jenny Smith works in a collaborative way to avoid adversarial correspondence. Alexis Harper is highly diligent and effective as is Jane Blackwood. Amanda Masson is robust in pursuing her client’s interests."
"Jenny asks the difficult questions and very often has the answers."
"She is a very careful operator who really considers what she is trying to achieve for clients and thins through the pros and cons."
"She is a very knowledgeable, proactive realistic and exceptionally hard-working."
Mediation - a thoughtful way forward
Outer House decision on expenses
The separation of cohabiting couples
Agreements and their challenges
Does mediation offer couples a better way to separate?
What do you do when business interests are involved in a divorce?
Domestic Violence Solicitors - Scottish Paralegal Association Webinar